Georgia Leal was a lovely name. That's what my dear Daddy thought. It was taken from the middle names of my two Grandma's Lillian Georgina, and Alice Leal. You ask, "What did the Grandma's think of that name?" I'll tell you, "They hated it!" Not disliked it and discreetly dropped hints, but full scale hated.
Grandma Cheney wrote to Papa (this was long before the internet) telling him about a scandal in the family. A man named George Cheney had spent his life in and out of jail. What if people confused my name for him? (Good try Grandma but did you really think that I would look like a man?)
Grandma Howard was equally vocal. When her pleas seemed to fall on deaf ears (My parents were both a little...well shall we say it nicely, determined!) When they joined forces they were an undefeatable team. They had closed ranks on this decision and no one was going to change their minds.
Grandma Howard went to buy a dress for me to be blessed in. (In The Church of Jesus Christ of latter day Saints we do not believe in infant baptism. Instead the Father stands in a circle of men who are family and friends, and blesses the infant and give the child a name.) Grandma looked at lots of lovely little dresses.
I don't know if she saw the dress first or the tag first. She bought the beautiful little white dress, and an elegant slip to go under (the dress was made of a transparent fabric...oh so lovely). The tag on the dress said, "A Caroljoy Creation."
Grandma came home with a smile on her face. She said to Mama and Papa, "Look at this tag. Isn't Caroljoy a lovely name? Much prettier than Georgia Leal."
Papa stewed and simmered until he went up to bless me. Then he named me Caroljoy...Thank you SO MUCH Grandma's for not liking the name Georgia Leal. Oh don't get me wrong, I think it's a beautiful name...for someone else. Maybe even a Grand daughter someday. (Like I have any say in those names...hee hee)
The story does NOT end there. I have gone through life loving my name Caroljoy. A Carol is a song of joy. So I'm a song of joy, joy...it gives me something to aspire towards. Oh I'm definitely not ALWAYS a song of joy. Sometimes I'm a big, old, GRUMPY PANTS!~ Yet my name reminds me of who I WANT to be.
The story does not end there. Thirty years later our first daughter was born. The most beautiful babe in the world, with very fair skin, and dark hair (like her Papa). She had tons of hair, but I digress. My beloved sister in law suggested that the perfect dress for blessing our girl was my blessing dress. After all this baby was truly a "Caroljoy Creation!"
I agreed, but the dress had yellowed horribly over the thirty years since I was blessed. My wonderful sister in law did not let this dampen her enthusiasm. Fels Naptha is her laundry weapon of choice. It's an old fashioned miracle. It's a humble bar that you buy at the store for about $1.50. Wetting the dress, she then took the bar and rubbed it all over the dress. Then she sat the dress in a bowl with more Fels Naptha and warm water. She repeated this process two or three times over two or three days. I was in awe when the dress came out looking brand new! (I LOVE Fels Naptha...and I LOVE my sister in law).
On a beautiful Autumn day with tons of family looking on (I do not exaggerate, we both have huge families), Nyle blessed our oldest daughter in her Caroljoy Creation dress.
I don't think the story ends there. Who will be the next little "Caroljoy Creation?"